New Zealand privacy commissioner John Edwards didn’t hold back when he lashed out at Facebook FB, -0.17% over the weekend:
‘Facebook cannot be trusted. They are morally bankrupt pathological liars.’
In a series of tweets that have since been deleted, Edwards said Facebook’s leaders “allow the live streaming of suicides, rapes, and murders, continue to host and publish the mosque attack video, allow advertisers to target ‘Jew haters’ and other hateful market segments, and refuse to accept any responsibility for any content or harm.”
His comments, of course, follow the livestream — and widespread sharing — of the shootings that left 50 people dead in Christchurch on March 15.
Edwards wrote that “They #dontgiveazuck,” referring specifically to Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg, who wouldn’t commit to any changes, such as delays, to the site’s live technology in an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America” last week. Zuckerberg claimed that the live streaming of the Christchurch attacks were the result of “bad actors” and not bad technology.
“Most people are livestreaming, you know, a birthday party or hanging out with friends when they can’t be together,” Zuckerberg explained during the interview. “It’s one of the things that’s magical about livestreaming is that it’s bi-directional, right? So you’re not just broadcasting. You’re communicating. People are commenting back. So if you had a delay, that would break that.”
Sunday night, Edwards explained why he deleted the tweets:
On Monday in an interview on Radio New Zealand, Edwards talked about Facebook’s reluctance to put appropriate systems in place.
“This is a global problem,” he said. “The events that were livestreamed in Christchurch could happen anywhere in the world, and it’s a problem that governments need to come together and force the platforms to have a solution for.”